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Paul Fulda


Associate Professor

PhD University of Birmingham (2012)


Office: 2364

Research Interest

My research is primarily targeted at gravitational wave detection on the ground (LIGO) and in space (LISA). As a member of the LIGO Scientific Collaboration, I study the optical characteristics of the Advanced LIGO detectors using frequency domain modal simulations in order to improve the reliability and sensitivity of these instruments. I also work on experimental R&D for future technologies for upgrades to the LIGO detectors, and for a new generation of ground-based gravitational wave detectors. Current R&D projects include using electro-optic beam deflectors to produce interferometric alignment sensing signals without the need for quadrant photodetectors, and the use of higher-order Hermite-Gauss beams for precision interferometry.

As a member of the LISA Consortium, I am working on the design of the LISA optical metrology system. Current projects revolve mostly around the LISA telescopes, which are used to transmit and receive laser light across the 2 million km long arms of the LISA constellation. I work in collaboration with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center to develop a testing facility for the telescope prototype, in order to demonstrate the required performance of the telescopes to fulfill the mission goals.

Selected Publications

P. Fulda et al., Alignment sensing for optical cavities using radio-frequency jitter modulation, Appl. Opt. 56, 3879-3888 (2017)

LIGO-Virgo Collaboration, Observation of Gravitational Waves from a Binary Black Hole Merger, Phys. Rev. Lett. 116, 061102 (2016)

C. Mueller et al., In situ characterization of the thermal state of resonant optical interferometers via tracking of their higher-order mode resonances, Class. Quantum Grav. 23, 13 (2015)

L. Carbone et al., Generation of High-Purity Higher-Order Laguerre-Gauss Beams at High Laser Power, Phys. Rev. Lett. 110, 251101 (2013)

P. Fulda et al., Experimental demonstration of higher-order Laguerre-Gauss mode interferometry, Phys. Rev. D 82, 021002 (2010)